the photography, music and ramblings of Matt Lipstein

Weird and wild ways to celebrate the holidays...

Last year I participated in two different "alternative" (whatever that means anymore) holiday events. I won't be free to do either this year, but want to encourage you to check these out. Both made my last December very special.

Santacon - December 16th, 10am, NYC (other dates for othe cities)

Quite simply this is where you and 500 other folks dress up like Santa Clause and go wilding in the streets of New York, not knowing where your next destination will be. It basically gives you free license to do whatever the hell you want. It is as debaucherous as you want it to be - and is non-stop fun.

Check my photos from last year's Santacon here.

Unslient Night - December 16 7pm
NYC (other dates for other cities)
This is an event where you take over the streets of manhattan and blast instrumental music on boom boxes. It's all composed by this guy Phil Kline, and many of the tapes are slightly different. It makes for an amazing sound scape that sweeps therough the streets (and shuts down traffic!)

The straight dope below:

2006 Unsilent Night

Every year since 1992 I've presented Unsilent Night, an outdoor
ambient music piece for an INFINITE number of boom box tape players.
It's like a Christmas carolling party except that we don't sing, but
rather carry boom boxes, each playing a separate tape (or CD) which is
a “voice” in the piece. In effect, we become a city block long stereo

In 2006 the New York event will happen on Saturday December 16th. We
will meet at the Arch in Washington Square at 6:45 pm, begin at 7 pm
and proceed eastward to Tompkins Square Park, where the piece will end
around 8 o'clock.

It would be really cool if you could join us and bring a boom box. The
more tapes we run, the bigger and more amazing the sound will be. This
past Christmas we had several hundred boomboxes and well over 1000
people total, it was really spectacular... If you'd like to do it but
don't have a boombox, I have several dozen and you can grab one...and
if you want to come and just listen, that's cool, too. Help us make a
BIG (and joyful) noise.

Questions can be directed to

This year there are Unsilent Nights in LA, San Francisco, San Diego,
Santa Barbara, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charleston, Asheville NC,
Milledgeville GA, Vancouver BC, Banff Alberta, White Horse Yukon,
Middlesbrough UK and Sydney Australia.

Also, this year for the first time we have an Unsilent Night MySpace
page and have Mp3s available on my website for folks who have iPods
with speakers.

Hope to see you all there,

Please support your alternative scene, and most of all have fun!

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